Community welcomes venue move
The Putaruru Youth Centre welcomed Lottery commission cameras to show off its new facilities recently.
A tour of the centre will be shown on Lotto this weekend.
The centre is now based out of the old Putaruru Municipal Band building on Glenshea St.
Trustee Pam Carter is elated with the new venue which the Putaruru Youth Matters Trust, which oversees the youth centre, is buying.
Mrs Carter said the trust is fundraising to complete the purchase by December this year.
‘‘We had been looking for an alternative building for some time as we were aware that some of our funders were no longer contributing to the rent of commercial buildings.
‘‘The band hall became available at the the right time for us and once paid for will mean that we will no longer be so reliant on funders, and be more sustainable long term,’’ Mrs Carter said.
The trust was formed more than four years ago after the spate of suicides in the small town.
‘‘Our community wanted to do something for our youth and preliminary research showed that the youth wanted something to call their own, so we answered those calls and created a centre where they could and play pool, study or just to catch up with friends. The centre is being well used by our youth,’’ Mrs Carter said.
She said hard work will be poured into the new site to improve facilities, including fresh paint and clearing the grounds.
Centre user Cingston Brown, 18, describes the centre as a good place for youth to come.
‘‘I like coming here . . . No-one is causing trouble here.
‘‘It’s better than being on the street.’’
Putaruru Youth Centre is open from 1pm till 5pm during the school holidays, it provides a number of activities for youth between 13 to 25, including driver education.
The centre will also be available to other community groups for meetings and events.
YOUTH MATTER: The Putaruru Youth Matters Trust will run youth programmes out of its new centre on Glenshea St.